Parma, 5 January 2023 – This week’s Crociati history at the Giuseppe Meazza in Milan with Inter in the Coppa Italia has a few chapters to be told. One in particular, however, stands out.

It concerns the night of Wednesday 17 February 1999, when Parma and Inter played the semi-final first leg.

It was a match that left its mark on us all. One to remember, for several reasons.

Our team won away at the Nerazzurri for the very first time.

We dominated the match and deserved the win, despite the absences of Hernan Crespo, Enrico Chiesa, Alain Boghossian, Nestor Sensini and, through illness, Dino Baggio.

One decision by the match referee, Stefano Braschi of Prato, remained pivotal.

It caused a great stir resulting in three simultaneous red cards for the hosts due to their vehement protests.

The trigger was the move that led to us taking the lead, scored with a historic goal scored by Juan Sebastian Veron in the 77th minute.

Our full-back Paolo Vanoli won a contest with Inter midfielder Benoit Cauet on the left wing.

Faustino Asprilla, with both players on the ground, immediately took possession of the ball.

He launched it about thirty metres, towards the left corner of the Nerazzurri’s area. Here Veron picked it up, hitting it on the volley from the edge of the box.

The ball cut across the area and into the corner of the goal to the right of goalkeeper Gianluca Pagliuca (0-1).

The original Vanoli-Cauet contact, according to the Inter players, was a foul. In their opinion, the game had to be stopped and Juan Sebastian’s thunderstrike had to be ruled out.

So they hurled themselves en masse, led by captain Beppe Bergomi, towards Braschi, surrounding him. Strong words were aimed at the referee, with pushing and shoving.

The Tuscan referee, in a flash, issued red cards to Bergomi and his teammates Javier Zanetti and Francesco Colonnese.

It must be said, for the record, that in the 65th minute a clear penalty in our favour from a Gilberto foul on Diego Fuser was not given.

Inter ended the match with eight players on the pitch. Parma had several chances to extend their lead but squandered them, especially through Asprilla and Abel Balbo.

The second goal finally came in the 86th minute. The Argentine striker made it happen.

Balbo scored by heading in a cross from the right by Pierluigi Orlandini, who had replaced Fuser a minute earlier.

Orlandini was played through down the wing by a beautiful backheel from Mario Stanic (0-2).

Parma actually gambled their qualification to the Coppa Italia final that night, which they went on to win in May against Fiorentina.

A gamble that did not let down the Crociati’s guard, who in the return leg, at the Ennio Tardini stadium on 9 March, beat Inter again (2-1).

In the pictures: clashes between Asprilla and Cauet, Fabio Cannavaro and Bergomi, Raffaele Longo and Zanetti, Youri Djorkaeff and Luigi Sartor; Veron and Balbo’s celebrations for their goals; the Crociati fans.